Major Audie Murphy, the most decorated soldier in WWII, was awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor as the highest among his several decorations for valor. The Audie Murphy memorial on the AT marks the plane crash in which he died as a civilian after the war.
It’s a hiker tradition to leave something at the memorial, especially those of us who are veterans. I’ve been carrying a special Army pin since the beginning of my hike, expressly for the that purpose.
Audie Murphy served in the U.S. Army’s Third Infantry Division (Rock of the Marne) which is currently stationed near Savannah, Ga. at Ft. Stewart. There its mission is to be our nation’s rapidly deployable armored force.
What you may not know is that many military units have unique songs that grow out of their various traditions. The Third Division’s song is a fun ditty entitled “Dogface Soldier” which is reminiscent of the culture and times when it was written in WWII. Here’s a link: http://www.stewart.army.mil/faq/dogface.mp3 By the way, and no offense to my Marine comrades, but I too “Wouldn’t give a bean to be a fancy-pants Marine. 🙂
Regular readers of this blog know this, but for those who don’t, I’m a retired “dog face” Army infantryman with 28 years of service. Today I proudly stood at attention and saluted the memory of a bona fide American hero.
“Dog Face.” That’d be a great trail name for somebody, don’t ya think?
This is how Murphy might have heard or sung it:
“I wouldn’t give a bean to be a fancy-pants Marine.
I’ll be the dog face soldier that I am.
I wouldn’t trade my old ODs for all the Navy’s dungarees,
’cause I’m the walkin’ pride of Uncle Sam.
The poster on the wall says the Army builds men,
So they’re tearing me down to build me over again.
I’m just a dogface soldier with a rifle on my shoulder.
I eat my beans for breakfast every day.
If you feed me ammunition,
‘N keep me in the Third Division,
Your dogface soldier ‘ll be okay!”
The day ended post-hiking up the Dragon’s Tooth in a biting wind. The icy descent to my waiting friend’s car was treacherous practice for New Hampshire’s White Mountains coming up in June.
Am now taking a weather zero in Roanoke.